Taking private music lessons can be an invaluable tool if you or your children wish to pursue a career as a musician. Whether your thing is the piano, guitar, drums or singing, learning in a one-on-one setting will take you to new heights.
Of course, the lessons are only as valuable as the instructor, so here are some things to look for when you want to find a private music instructor.
If you’re going to learn music in a private setting, it’s terribly important that your instructor has a wealth of knowledge about the subject matter he or se is teaching. Before you sign on, ask the instructor about his or her training, certifications or degrees that pertain to music and the instrument you are learning. While these won’t guarantee they are knowledgeable, it’s a pretty good indication.
It’s also important that your private music instructor has relevant musical experience. What is his performance experience like? Has he performed in the same venues as and the same situations as you want to perform? It is very true that a great performer won’t always translate to a great teacher, but knowing he’s been where you want to go is always a plus.
A proven track record as a private music teacher is perhaps the greatest attribute a teacher can have. If he or she has taught students like yourself and those students have gone on to achieve their musical goals and dreams, you are on the right track. Successful students are a definite sign that an instructor gets the best out of their students and knows what it takes to get them to the next level.
Of course, even if the instructor has a history of success not all personalities mesh together and not every teacher and student relationship will work. Watch how the instructor communicates, ask about his teaching philosophies and get a sense of his general personality.
If you or your child respond well to an instructor who is calm and quiet and yours is full of energy with an in your face style, it may not be a good fit. Likewise, if you need a fire lit under you to really flourish and the instructor is low key, it probably won’t work either. Ask if you can speak to a few former or current students and then you’ll be able to assess if the personalities will match.
Ken W is a music junkie and a freelance writer who loves to write anything about music. For first time music players, he would recommend a private music instructor from Long & McQuade.